Tuesday, March 06, 2007

The Long Post

Again, sorry about the lack of updates recently. Last week I was reprimanded by Michelle for having a few long pauses between posts and then look at me - another one! Sorry Michelle. But last week was quite full on for everyone. We had a big adventure every day of the week and by Thursday when we met up with Michelle and Ruby poor Harry had had enough.

On Monday, as per usual, we went to the pool to meet up with the lovely women and babies from the AP group. Now Harriet has come to expect these trips she start getting more and more agitated in the car as we're driving there. By the time we're within sight of it, she's lifting up her window sock pointing and yelling "Pool! Pool!". On this day however it was miserable weather-wise. But do you think this would stop Harriet, wonder-swimmer? Nuh huh.

I was dragged out into the toddler pool whether I liked it or not (luckily I do, I guess). I was game enough to take my camera out to the pool on this occasion because she was the lone toddler soul out there on this day and I wasn't in mortal fear of my camera being splashed by exuberant swimming babies. Although as it turned out, I should have been wary of Harry, because she was a splash-a-holic that day. But it was also lovely to then go inside and have a warm cup of coffee and chat to everyone. Tigerlily made it this week and Harry was in lurve! She kept 'talking' about her for the next few days and luckily I had taken some photos so I could indulge her interest somewhat. Tiger is about the same age as Harriet and has a similar disposition, so it's a true meeting of the minds. Harry was eager to get everyone on board with her latest obssession - stickers! Or as Harry calls it - "tikatikatika". At one point all the babies were off playing on their own and doing their own thing, when Harriet came over to me asking for some stickers. I gaveher the sheet of stars and next thing we know, all of the babies have been corralled in and Harriet is walking amongst them allocating stars for arms and legs and faces and then walking over and swapping them around. It was very cute to see - all of them were just suddenly quiet for a while and I turned around to see this little game being played out. Very cute considering mostly at this age they tend to play on their own.

When we were walking across the park back to the car, Harriet decided she wanted to call the cats. Whuh?? Anyway, so I poipped her on the ground and sure enough, she started calling the cats by rubbing together her thumb and fingers and making very loud mewling sounds. We did get a few looks from people who thought they were hearing feral cats on the premises (she is really good at her cat sounds), but poor Harry failed to materialise any cats to play with.

We went home and after a nice big sleep, Harriet was interested in the rosemary plant we bought on the weekend. She gave those leaves a big ole sniff in her most intense, unladylike manner. It basically involves her scrinching up her nose, scrinching up her eyes and letting forth with a very LOUD "snnrrrfffff". Then she grins like mad and does it again. She loved the rosemary and I even managed to snap a shot of her looking like a human being and not some sort of insane bloodhound.

And yes, yes, my white balance was all sorts of rubbish on this day, but this little portrait is just too cute not to include on the site. She is losing her hair clips faster than I can find places to buy them. The weird thing is though that she desperately wants them. I'll put one in and then sometime afterwards (usually when I'm not looking of course) she'll tug at it, suck on it for a while and then leave it discarded wherever it happens to fall. Let me tell you - they *never* happen to fall anywhere that can be recovered. So I start off each month with about ten clips and by the end of the month I am usually reduced to about two. So every now and then we get these bedraggled hair photos. I'm trying to grow it out so that she can put it behind her ear but it seems to be taking an awefully long time. A few people have asked me this week if I've cut her hair actually but no, it's just that with the humidity her curls go crazy and spring up quite tightly against her head. I did take a photo of it somewhere, will try and dig it up for posting.

Then on Monday night Papa came home and it was discovered that we were living bereft of consumables. So a quick trip to our local supermarket was in order (bless you midnight closing times). There Harriet delighted in helping us shop by picking up the bags, running up and down the aisles to retrieve items of questionable worth and place them in the bags (to be returned to the shelves with parental discretion), as well as helping us to have fun by throwing her in the air, holding her upside down and letting her swipe the card and receive the "dokidokitdokit".

*Phew* Was that just about Monday?

On Tuesday I woke up and realised we had nothing planned, so I got in contact with Rory and arranged to meet up with her and the Professor (also known as Xavier) that morning for coffee. She suggested Stanmore and since it was near the station and we're near the station thought it was the right time to let Harriet experience the joys of Cityrail. She *loved* it. We made friends with lots and lots of people, some who got stickers and some who didn't. Two women called Harriet "a gorgeous doll" (actually I think one of them said she was like a porcelain doll) but she wasn't in fragile girly girly mood at all, she was in full on crazy chick mode. This included some chair gymnastics on the way. We got to the cafe after the arduous process of waiting for trains at Redfern and changing lines but this was all just fun for Haz. At the cafe Xavier was sitting up in a highchair! He's so grown up now! Harriet had her ubiquitous babycino (and I smuggled her marshmallow as I do when they come with them - who on earth would want to give a toddler straight sugar?!) and Rory and I chatted about life and babies.

*ahem* I told you she wasn't being particularly girly that day! Getting day home was a challenge sicne she was SO tired that every little thing is a distraction and it took us just over 30mins to walk home (when Jimbo walks down to the station each morning in less than five minutes).

It wouldn't be quite so bad if there was a little more shade along the way. We do have a long stopover at the mammoth frangipani tree on the way thoughwhich we both love. The flowers are just out of reach because it is sooooo big, but Harry and I are content with picking up and smelling the ones that have just dropped. Ahhh frangipanis, how much I love them. Harry has also developed this love and will sit sniffing a frangipani for ages when I give her one and we often find an old flower in the back of her trike whcih has outlived its smelliness.

On Wednesday I had the luxury of having Nana come down all the way from her house to look after Harry for just a couple of hours while I went in to USyd to do some things. Of course within ten minutes of leaving the house I had a car accident! Not a bad one but I ran up the back of a ute as I was turning a corner - my sandals got caught in each other and I slipped and hit the accelerator instead of the brake. Not a problem usually but the car in front had stopped short because a car was pulling out in the spot just around the corner, so *bam* I rammed up her butt. Luckily not much damage to her car and the bonnet buckled a little on Awgie and scraped the paint at the front, but he should be ok for a couple of weeks yet. Harry of course wasn't in the car which was the best bit. I was a little shaken but otherwise all ok. Haz found it quite stressful though - a lot of tears when I left (which was just as hard for me) then when I got back she was so exhausted that I put her down to sleep almost immediately. So when she woke up Nana had gone without her saying a proper goodbye, which meant many tears and upsets for the rest of the afternoon. So a difficult day.

In the above photo Harriet is demonstrating her most annoying game of late - headbanging! Sounds cute yes, but in reality not so much. She read this book where the character gets hit in the head by a swing and she loves to hit her head as well. Now it has progressed to a game that we were unwittingly encouraging - she hits her head, we say "No! Harry, Don't!", she giggles and repeats. So we've had to calm it down on the reaction, but she stil does it every now and then. Like there she is hitting Doll2 on her head and giggling like crazy. Hmmm...

Then on Thursday we were meeting Michelle and Ruby who had travelled all the way from Perth! Not just to see us of course, but a big trip nonetheless. We went to the Powerhouse Museum after a night before scramble to re-arrange venues when I realised that the Australian Museum had closed down their children's area until May. Then it was a communications issue because Harriet has sucked on my phone and left a little saliva present in there meaning that my number '8' button doesn't work. You try SMSing someone a message without using the letters 't', 'u' or 'v' - it is very, very difficult!!!

We went down to the playground and Harry was in heaven when she realised there was a whizzy dizzy there like the one at her big playground! Ruby is here in the background either pushing Haz around or desperately entreating her to get off and let her have a turn. Oh and Michelle I have more photos of Ruby to send you never fear.

Poor Ruby had to put up with Harry's sticker obssession as well, which is a bit much when you've never met someone before - all of a sudden there they are, reaching over your arms and legs smacking ruddy stars all over you! But Ruby (or as James calls her- miniJoe), took it all in her stride and didn't even seem to mind when Harriet screamed in my arms all the way from Powerhouse up to Broadway. There was nowhere to stop and give her a feed on the way (well, I could have sat on the pavement in the dust of construction sites but didn't know how claming an experience that would end up being) so when we finally made it to Central I had to pike and let Michelle and the somnolent Ruby go on their merry way. No doubt they were glad to see the back of us by that stage. Harry then perked up however and ate a Nudie icypole (well, ate MY Nudie icypole) which made the final stretch of getting home a little less stressful. Oh - that is not including her 'backwards' game where she says "Back!" and starts walking backwards. Not the most fun game with a physically exhausted Mama on a train platform.

So after being separated and out-of-sorts on Wednesday, then very stressed and overtired on Thursday, we decided to make it a quiet home-based Friday. This is the day Harriet realised her future occupation as a tattoo artist. I mean, I gave her paper and everything. There was ample opportunity to paint a masterpiece. However the better canvas for these artistic fingers was the artist's own torso. I think that should be the name of her first exhibit. Pink, blue and green never looked so cool. Unfortunately it was a pretty difficult day, with Harry screaming and squealing a lot. I put this down to all of the upheaval and stress of the week. Poor poppet.

On the weekend, lucky Miss Harry had a visit from Nana and Grandpa. On Sunday morning they took her out to the beach while Mama and Papa lived in luxury and had three hours off to go and see a movie (Stranger than Fiction - tops). So this photo is courtesy of Nana and Grandpa. Apparently she played the towel off / towel on game which is always a favourite. And a lot of digging around in the sand (her love of sand has been well documented here so it comes as no surprise to regular readers I'm sure).

Then we all met up in a cafe in Newtown. Like the rest of the week it was horribly humid and blech and unfortunately the cafe we chose to sit in was like a little suntrap. We were all grumpy and had sun headaches and just wanted to get out of there. Well Harriet cheered us up with her babycino goatee (another Nana and Grandpa photo, thanks!) as well as all the other patrons who thought it hilarious to see this crazy kid with the chocolate facial hair. Not too many raised eyebrows really, especially since it was the morning after Mardi Gras.

And then we come full circle with Harriet and I going to the AP meet yesterday at the pool and then today having a quiet one at home. She was helping me put out the washing and was being SO cute. We also have a couple of new games - doing "Cheers" with the glass which she had done once or twice beforehand but Grandpa was the one who signed, sealed and delivered it this weekend. Also Papa has her doing the horns of the devil and saying "ROOOOOCCCKKK" in her best growly heavy metal voice. Which translates from Harry as a raised hand, palm out, fingers splayed and "ARCCKK" in cute little toddler voice. Have I mentioned it before? She is so the best baby. And so endeth the long long post that has taken a long time to write!


Jen - Faithful Servant of the Adventurous Duo! said...

What an awesome week Cass :) (and long post ;)) .

We must make the trek to Sydney some time because Harry and my two would get along SO well :) . We do cheers or 'eers' every night, usually initiated by Angel and it is done a billion times, mine love stickers and Harry loves to give them :p ...although I am trying to imagine Harry's 'ARRCKK' movement going with Angel's 'arms in air, doof doof style dancing, while we chant 'go Angel, go Angel' :p".

Gorgeous photos! (love the un-ladylike one! LOL) and I think that Harry is looking more grown up in these ones, perhaps it is her hair being longer...

She is so adorable :D

Claire, Ola & Mia :o) said...

Wow, hats off to you for such a long post...your fingers must be aching. I am so with about the hair clips, sometimes I wonder if Mia is actually eating them as they just seem to disappear into thin air. And just wait until it is long enough to put in a pony tail - it is the same story with hair bands.

Well got to run, I can hear my name being called from the shower..